Linda Feldman details four reasons Anthony Weiner is “no Mark Sanford.” Here they are:
• Weiner is trying to come back much sooner than Sanford did, two years versus four years.
• Weiner is aiming for a more prestigious job – mayor of the biggest city in the United States, currently held by Michael Bloomberg. Sanford had the good fortune of seeing his old congressional seat open up, allowing him to show a little humility as he ran for a job less prestigious than the governorship.
• Sanford had less difficult competition than Weiner does – not that Sanford’s political resurrection was a sure thing. Plenty of voters in South Carolina’s First Congressional District weren’t ready to forgive and forget. He had to compete in a runoff for the Republican nomination. Then in the general, he faced a well-funded Elizabeth Colbert Busch, sister of satirist Stephen Colbert. Toward the end of the campaign, Sanford’s ex-wife accused him of trespassing on her property, and the National Republican Congressional Committee stopped investing in the race. But the district was heavily Republican, and Ms. Colbert Busch was a political novice. Sanford won by nine percentage points.
• Perhaps the biggest issue weighing against Weiner is the “ick” factor. The “weiner” jokes are back, as voters are treated to rehashes of Weiner’s lewd texts and tweets sent to women he had met online. Back in 2011, when confronted, Weiner lied about his actions before admitting to them.
Those are all pretty compelling reasons, but I still get this feeling Weiner is going to pull this out.